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Kids get the farm day experience

Bolado Park host annual San Benito County Farm Day to teach third graders about agriculture.
Kids watch as a border collie works a herd of goats. Photo by Blaire Strohn
Trevor Wright tells kids about raising show cows. Photo by Blaire Strohn
Veterinarian, Charlie Tobias showing kids about proper care of animals. Photo by Blaire Strohn

Over 800 third graders in the county arrived at Bolado Park on March 13 gazing at horses, pigs, goats, chickens, old tractors, and even got to watch a dog work a herd of goats during the annual San Benito County Farm Day.  The event is held for kids to learn where their food comes from.

“Farm Day is an opportunity for children to develop an appreciation for agriculture, and gain an understanding of how and where their food is grown. As well as learn about the important contributions of agriculture to our local community and economy,” said Mindy Sotelo, San Benito County Farm Bureau.

“Farm day originally started with Mildred Freeborn the Farm Bureau’s secretary 28 years ago.  She had a vision for Farm Day and started working with the cattlemen and women, as well as other individuals passionate about agriculture and they began planning and developing Farm Day for local 3rd graders,”  Sotelo mentioned.

One of the volunteers was Becky Doty, Student Activities and Athletics Clerk at San Benito High School. She was busy assisting the Future Farmer of America (FFA) and 4-H members who volunteered with presentation, logistics, and anywhere else they could fill in.  

“Volunteers are taking time out of their work day and sharing their passion for agriculture," Doty said. “I feel proud going home after farm day every year because I’m happy to be a part of agriculture education.”

Hillary Raine, who teaches third grade at Spring Grove Elementary School, said, “Farm Day is helpful for kids that don’t know anything about agriculture because they are able to learn where their food comes and the growing and science behind it.”

“They need to learn that a lot of hard work goes into food production-from tilling the soil, planting the seeds and then harvesting the food,” she said. “The most memorable thing about Farm Day for the kids was the tractor presentation. They were fascinated by the different tractors and equipment used to plant crops!”

Here's what students from Raines' class said they learned at Farm Day:

Damien said, “I learned that years ago horses were used to plant crops and now we have tractors that do it! I didn’t know tractors had so much horse power! The last tractor was awesome. It goes over the soil and shoots out plants!”

Caelyn said, "One of my favorite things was the dog! It was very clever and smart because the dog would follow he guy and whatever way the guy moves, the dog moves the opposite way."

Betzy said, "I learned that a tomato is a fruit!"

“Farm Day is supported by Farm Bureau, local organizations such as CattleWomen, Ag Boosters, Saddle Horse Association, a Community Foundation grant and many local businesses…mostly ag businesses,” Sotelo said. 

With the threat of rain in the forecast Sotelo said this year many presenters had to move indoors or under covered areas. “With the feedback we've gotten so far, everybody loved moving things inside, giving the kids a chance to learn and understand more about agriculture,” she said. 

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Blaire Strohn (bstrohn)

Blaire Strohn is a graduate student at Oklahoma State University focusing on International Agriculture. Blaire also graduated from California State University, Fresno with a Bachelors Degree in Agriculture Communications. Born and raised on a cow/calf operation ranch in Paicines, she is passionate about the agriculture community and western way of life.


Submitted by (shana strohn) on

Farm Day is truly a great learning experience for the kids to attend from a vision that Mildred Freeborn had so many years today this has grown into such a worthwhile event for all to experience and the volunteers who help make this possible. What a great tradition and hope it continue for many years because My job depends on ag as so many do!

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